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Time to take a pause?

Busy?  Then why not take a pause…

Do you find yourself rushing through your day moving from one task to another?  How often do you hear yourself saying I don’t have enough time?  Then perhaps you need to start taking a pause.

Taking a pause might seem counterintuitive when you are so busy but there are many benefits from adopting this simple practice:

  • Finding even a couple of moments here and there will give you an opportunity to recharge.
  • You get the chance to take a step back and perhaps make some different choices.
  • If you need to get creative, solve a problem or make a decision, taking a pause and letting the answer emerge can come up with some surprising results.

So how do you do this?

The first thing to do is to remind yourself to take a pause.  It helps if you attach your pauses to a routine activity that happens several times a day such as walking between meetings, having a cuppa, getting in the car (before you drive) or you can simply set a reminder to take several pauses throughout the day.

A pause can literally be a breath or two.  You just inhale and exhale and feel yourself breathing for a few moments.  Or you can take a longer more structured pause by following these steps:

  1. As you pause, check in with yourself and ask yourself the question “what’s going on for me right now?”
  2. Then focus on your breath or, if you are walking, pay attention to the sensations of your body as you move.
  3. Every time your mind wanders off to the past or the future, simply notice that it has wandered and bring it back to your breath or the sensations of movement.
  4. At the end of your pause check in with yourself to see how you are feeling now.  And before moving on take a moment to decide what you need to do next to get the best out of yourself and the rest of your day.

So how often do you need to take a pause?

Well, to get a new habit the more times you do it the more it becomes something you do naturally.  Try starting with 2 or 3 pauses and see where that takes you.

Remember.  It takes very little time out of your day to take a few pauses and yet it can have surprising benefits.  So why not give it a try.

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